Ruby, our new rabbit, has her first official nickname. Spriggy had approximately a thousand, ranging from Fart in a Hot Skillet to his Indian name, Joe Walks Along. So we like to call our animals by handles other than their given names. But even I was impressed when Alan threw this one out: Miss Lisa Bunnay.
It’s an inside joke going back to the late ’80s, when a bunch of us made a video for a friend’s upcoming wedding. (We edited it using two VCRs, which tells you something.) It was set 20 years in the future, when we had all moved on to other things and the wedding couple had spiraled into rural poverty. (One of my favorite clips is one character’s description of coming upon their house, with all the barefoot kids running around the yard yelling, “Stranger comin’!”) Anyway, I believe my fate was to work as a writer for the “Miss Lisa Bonet Show,” which tells you something. It’s hard to overstate what a cultural Bigfoot Bill Cosby was in the ’80s. I found an old open for “The Cosby Show” on YouTube or Hulu or something, and called Kate over to watch; I’ve long contended that Raven Symone is actually 42 years old, and wanted her to see for herself.
It turns out I was wrong, but seeing anew the overwhelming smugness and self-satisfaction of the whole presentation blew my hair back. The mugging! The preening! You get the idea these people are still ordering coffee, then striking a pose for the roar from the laugh track. We the viewers were just as complicit; we had made a black family sitcom into a juggernaut, and yes, the words “post-racial America” were heard then, too. Phylicia Rashad’s husband proposed to her on national television, and she accepted likewise. She even changed her name for him, which is a form of hubris in and of itself. (It turns out she was right about that one, though — unless I missed something, they’re still married.) Dr. Alvin Poussaint was a paid consultant to every episode, which was like printing “now with oat bran” on a box of donuts. It was extra good-and-good-for-you.
Bill Cosby was in town yesterday, going door to door, pushing education to Detroit parents, who must send their children to some of the worst public schools in the country. Fortunately, we saved a little local color just for him:
The neighborhood celebrating his appearance got an extra dose of excitement when a man hit a tree driving what police say was a stolen van. Officer Leon Rahmaan, a police spokesman, says the man was speeding through the neighborhood about 5 p.m. when he spotted police accompanying Cosby.
Rahmaan says the man made a quick turn, lost control of the van and hit the tree less than two blocks from where Cosby was speaking with residents about keeping their kids in Detroit Public Schools. The man ran from the smashed-up van but was arrested after a brief foot chase.
I loves you, Detroit.
As a parent, I will pause and gives Cosby props for “Little Bill.” It was everything “The Cosby Show” wasn’t — simple, endearing, quiet. Kate loved it when she was little, and I loved watching it with her.
Miss Lisa Bunnay’s next nickname will probably be some version of Greased Lightning. I have never seen an animal so unwilling to follow orders when it’s time to return to the cage.
A little beautiful-day bloggage? Sure:
When life imitates “The Wire.” I usually link to the Metro Times version of Detroitblog’s biweekly dispatches, but one of the additional photos on his blog made me think of “The Wire,” so here you are. It’s about a family of squatters in the most squat-friendly city in North America.
I don’t think I’ll renew Vanity Fair this year. They’re starting to embarrass themselves.
Today’s flash-in-the-pan website (HT: Hank): Keggers of Yore. I think I’m in some of these pictures.
Work. Exercise. The last days of summer. I’m away to do it all.